According to The Irish Times


Cycling is booming with new trails and greenways catering for every level of experience!

If you love cycling, have a look at this list made by David Flanagan.


Portumna Forest Park 18km 70m Best for families and beginners and mountain bikers

The 450-hectare Portumna Forest Park lies on the northern shore of Lough Derg in Co Galway. The park, far from being a rectilinear plantation of spruce, has a wide variety of trees, including Scots pine, oak, ash, hazel, beech and birch, plus the occasional yew and juniper – and terrain, with patches of semi-native woodland, meadows, marshland and ponds. It is also home to over a dozen species of mammal: when I visited I spotted a few red squirrels and a herd of fallow deer grazing in a meadow.

Ballinastoe 15km 330m Best for beginner and intermediate mountain bikers

Ballinastoe in the Wicklow Mountains is one of five Coillte mountain bike trail centres. The 14km loop, which has over 9km of purpose-built single track, is one of the most popular mountain bike trails in the country. The flowing trails never get too steep and the terrain is generally friendly enough – there aren’t too many roots or rocks to deal with – so it’s quite suitable for beginners. At the trail-head, offers bike hire, repair and guiding, as well as a small shop and bike-washing facility.

Inland Burren 45km 610m Best for intermediate riders looking for quiet roads

Carron, the only village in the Burren uplands, is set in the midst of the limestone pavement and green fields that the region is famous for. This route consists of two separate loops that form a figure of eight, with the village at its centre. This means that each loop can be done as a distinct route or they can be combined into one longer one.

Sally Gap 42km 680m Best for riders looking to test themselves in the mountains

Dublin-based cyclists are blessed to have the Wicklow mountains on their doorstep. The network of roads that run through the valleys and over the high passes offers a huge variety of routes for cyclists of all tastes and abilities. The following route, although relatively short, packs in plenty of climbing and some of the best scenery the country has to offer.

The Sheeffry Hills 44km 380m Best for intermediate riders who don’t want too many hills

Surrounded by more famous neighbours such as Mweelrea to the west and Croagh Patrick to the north, the Sheeffry hills tend to be overlooked, yet they offer cyclists this really interesting and varied (two river crossings!) route that takes in some great mountain scenery while avoiding too much climbing.

The Royal and Grand Canal Best for cyclists looking to put in the miles

With hundred of kilometres of canal side-paths, Ireland’s network of waterways has a huge amount to offer cyclists interested in exploring the countryside and getting away from roads and traffic. The two canals that connect Dublin with the Shannon, the Royal and the Grand, can be linked to create a 120km route with only 40km of road riding. The path’s quality varies, so it’s more suitable for a mountain bike or hybrid than the narrow tyres of a road bike.

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